Feb. 25, 2011
FEDERAL WAY, Wash. - The Washington State University swimming team continued its success at the Pac-10 Championships as twelve Cougar swimmers set lifetime-bests, Friday.
The first event of the day was the 400 individual medley, where Shelbi Luchini, Danielle Palumbo and Taylor Indahl each finished with the fastest times of their careers during the preliminaries session. Luchini was the only Cougar to qualify for the finals in the event where she had another chance to break her personal record. The Rodeo, Calif., native did just that, dropping over a second from her morning time to 4:21.58. The finish was good enough for 20th in the event and moved Luchini up to third on the WSU all-time top-10 list. Palumbo finished in 4:28.68, the ninth-fastest time in school history. Indahl touched the wall in 4:29.95, good enough for 10th on the WSU all-time list.
Senior Talor Whitaker and freshman Emma Johansson led the group of Cougar swimmers by setting lifetime-bests in the 100 butterfly. Whitaker finished the finals in 54.08 seconds, meeting the NCAA "B" mark in the process. The swim put Whitaker in 18th place overall, while Johansson was two spots behind in 20th.
The 100 breaststroke record book would not remain static through the night, as Whitaker swam the best time of her career and seventh-fastest in school history. Marina Ruiz Jimenez also achieved a lifetime best in the event. Her time of 1:04.27 was close to a second faster than the morning swim and was good enough for 22nd place.
Palumbo, Taylor Ditty and Sam Bennett each swam lifetime-bests in the 100 back. Palumbo now owns the sixth spot on the WSU top-10 list with a time of 56.79. School record holder Rugile Mileisyte led all Cougar swimmers, with a 27th-place finish.
Emma Neely was WSU's top finisher in the 200 freestyle, taking 30th place. Though Neely missed the best time of her career, freshmen Heather Morlan and Lora Lougee each achieved lifetime-bests during the preliminary session.
The night concluded with the 400 medley relay. The Cougar team of Mileisyte, Ruiz Jimenez, Johansson and Whitaker took seventh in 3:45.38. WSU is currently in seventh place with 223 points. The meet will resume Friday with an 11 a.m. preliminary session, followed by the finals session, beginning at 6 p.m.